Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht


Jimmy Deenihan, TD - Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
Dinny McGinley TD - Minister of State
Joe Hamill- Secretary General of the Department

The Department is primarily a policy-making Department in the three sectors of culture, heritage and the Gaeltacht. It has the following functions:

Culture
Formulation, development and evaluation of policy and structures to promote and foster the practice and appreciation of the creative and interpretative arts and to encourage the development of the Irish film industry; enabling the national cultural institutions, as integral elements of the national culture, to preserve, protect and present for the benefit of present and future generations our moveable heritage and cultural assets. Heritage

Cultural Institutions Unit- Overview
The Cultural Institutions Unit of the Department seeks to create an environment enabling the National Cultural Institutions to flourish through the provision of financial resources and an appropriate policy framework. The National Cultural Institutions are:
National Archives National Concert Hall, National Library of Ireland, National Museum of Ireland, Chester Beatty Library and the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Crawford Art Gallery Cork and in addition the National Gallery of Ireland, which has its own Exchequer Vote and is responsible to the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism. Issues relating to the day-to-day management of the individual National Cultural Institutions are dealt with directly by the institutions themselves; matters relating to the general policy under which they operate and the provision of financial resources are matters for this Unit.

National Cultural Institutions:
The national cultural institutions under the aegis of the Department are as follows.:
Funded by Grant:
National Archives www.nationalarchives.ie:
Autonomous:
National Library of Ireland www.nli.ie:
National Photographic Archive (Photographic Division of the National Library) www.nli.ie:
National Museum of Ireland www.museum.ie:
Museum of Archaeology and History:
Museum of Natural History:
Museum of Decorative Arts and History:
Museum of Country Life, Turlough Park, Castlebar, Co. Mayo:
Funded by Grant-in-Aid::
Chester Beatty Library (a Public Trust) www.cbl.ie:
The Irish Museum of Modern Art (a Guarantee Licence Company) www.imma.ie:
The National Concert Hall (a Guarantee Licence Company)www.nch.ie:
The Crawford Art Gallery Cork www.crawfordartgallery.ie :
The National Gallery of Ireland is under the aegis of the Minister; www.nationalgallery.ie:
Other Bodies in receipt of funding from this department::
Archbishop Marsh's Library www.marshlibrary.ie:
The Hunt Museum www.huntmuseum.com :
The Irish Manuscripts Commission www.irishmanuscripts.ie :
The Irish Architectural Archive www.iarc.ie:
National Print Museum www.iol.ie/~npmuseum/:
Irish Genealogy Limited www.irishgenealogy.ie:
Foynes Flying Boat Museum www.flyingboatmuseum.com:


Council of National Cultural Institutions :
The Council of National Cultural Institutions is a statutory body established under the Heritage Fund Act, 2001. www.irishstatutebook.ie:
The purpose of the Council is :
•to facilitate the pooling together of talent, experience and vision of the Directors of the National Cultural Institutions in furtherance of the national cultural interest and :
•to make recommendations to the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism on proposed acquisitions using the Heritage Fund in respect of five eligible institutions, provided for under section 2 (1) of the Heritage Fund Act, 2001.:
Membership of the Council comprises the following::
Director, National Archives:
Director, National Library of Ireland:
Director, National Museum of Ireland:
Director, National Gallery of Ireland:
Director, Arts Council:
Chief Executive, Heritage Council:
Director and Chief Executive Officer, Irish Museum of Modern Art:
Director, National Concert Hall:
Director, Chester Beatty Library:
Artistic Director, Abbey Theatre:
Director, Crawford Art Gallery:


Heritage
The Department's remit includes built and natural heritage functions providing a wider, more holistic environmental mandate. We have a range of policy, regulatory, educational and promotional roles. The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) section of the Department manages the Irish State's nature conservation responsibilities under national and European law. A particular responsibility of the NPWS is the designation and protection of Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), Special Protection Areas (SPAs) and Natural Heritage Areas (NHAs). Archaeology is the responsibility of the National Monuments Service (NMS) section. The Architectural Protection and Heritage Policy section is responsible for built heritage – this includes the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage (NIAH)

Gaeltacht
A core task of the Department is to promote the social, physical and economic development of Gaeltacht areas and to strengthen Irish as the principal community language in the Gaeltacht, particularly in terms of passing the language from one generation to the next. The Department seeks to achieve these objectives both through its own programmes and schemes and those of the bodies under its aegis. The key underlying objective of Government policy in this regard is to maintain the primacy of the Irish language and its related culture in the Gaeltacht.

The Department also seeks to maintain an effective working relationship with other organisations, particularly Údarás na Gaeltachta in order to ensure the implementation of Government policy in respect of the Gaeltacht.

Coimisiún na Gaeltachta was established by the Government on April 4 2000, to make recommendations in regard to strengthening the position of Irish as the vernacular of the Gaeltacht community.

Following the publication in May 2002 of Coimisiún na Gaeltachta's Report on the Irish language in the Gaeltacht, and in view of the commitment made in the Agreed Programme for Government to use the report as the basis for future policy, an Advisory Committee was established by the Minister in October 2002.

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